Austria Is a Wonderful Country

Martin Krenn: Österreich ist ein wunderbares Land, installation shot Weltmuseum Wien (2021), photo: Iklim Dogan

Austria Is a Wonderful Country recalls the brutalities and subjugation that took place during the “Anschluss” of Austria by Nazi Germany in 1938. With the participation of the Austrian population, Jewish men and women were forced to wash away political slogans by the former Austro-fascist “Ständestaat” (Corporative State). The central part of the installation is a video film based on original quotes from eyewitness reports and image descriptions of historical photos.
Several characters narrate the quotes from the eyewitnesses in the film. One of them is a reporter (played by actor Annamáría Láng), another is a contemporary witness (played by the actor Peter Rothkappel). Both of them appear in the video at historically contaminated locations. The reporter talks about the events that happened during the 1938 “annexation”; she speaks from the perspective of journalists and describes documents as well as historical photos. The third character (Susanne Bock) is the off-screen narrator; she reads quotes from eyewitnesses who were victims of the Nazi persecution. Susanne Bock also reads a quote from her own biography. In the epilogue, Robert Halpern, one of the last eyewitnesses of the “Reibpartien,” describes his experience when he fell victim to one of these pogroms.

Curatorial team Marina Gržinić, Christina Jauernik, and Sophie Uitz
Stories of Traumatic Pasts: Counter-Archives for Future Memories
Exhibition at Weltmuseum Wien, 7.10.2020 – 3.4.2021

Restaging the Object: A Participatory Exploration of Long Kesh/Maze Prison Martin Krenn & Aisling O’Beirn (eds.)

The books have arrived in Berlin and Belfast and are ready to order. Thanks to Anna-Sophie Springer and K. Verlag | Press for the support and the photos.
Restaging the Object: A Participatory Exploration of Long Kesh/Maze Prison
Martin Krenn & Aisling O’Beirn (eds.)
With contributions by Martin Krenn & Aisling O’Beirn, Laura McAtackney, Suzana Milevska & Peter Peter Claus Mutschler and the project participants Simon Bridge, Phil Holland, David Stitt, The 50+Group under the umbrella of Tar Anall, the Eileen Hickey Irish Republican History Museum, the Roddy McCorley Society Museum, the Andy Tyrie Interpretative Centre, as well as a number of contributors who prefer to remain anonymous.

Design by Keith Connolly, Tonic Design, Belfast, English, 170 x 225 mm, 256 pages, Two paper stocks, Full color throughout, Sewn in sections, ISBN 978-3-9818635-6-7, Published by K. Verlag

Our Way[s] of Life Accompanying Event: – Settlement Hierarchy

Martin Krenn, One village from Austria (2011-12), Video 33:48 mins

THU 27 JUN 2019 7:00PM, Austrian Cultural Forum London, 28 Rutland Gate, London SW7 1PQ
Low density settlements are central to European national identities, from the English hamlet with thatched roofs and WI meetings, to Austrian alpine villages, nestled in the mountains. They represent ways of life which for the most part no longer exist, retreats into the past which become romanticised with time and modern sewage management.
Accompanying the exhibition Our Way[s] of Life this event will explore varied aspects of quaint history: from Daniela Grabosch’s dark Google Maps journey though Mussolini’s lakeside seat of governance, Salò, now a popular tourist destination, to Martin Krenn’s archival exploration of Austria’s heart via the Open-Air Museum Stübing, a settlement of 97 historic rural buildings from different federal states, and a performance by Calvin Z. Laing, touching upon Scottish linguistics and his youth, growing up in suburbs of Edinburgh. Collectively these artists reflect upon our propensity to both memorialise the village and to carry an idealised version of it forward into our cultural subconscious.

Welcome To The Club in the museum House of Austrian History

Permanent Installation “Welcome to the Club” in the museum „House of Austrian History“

Dear friends and colleagues,
it’s a great pleasure to announce that the dialogical art installation “Welcome to the Club” opens in the House of Austrian History this Thursday, 6 June 2019 at 19:00. I am very much looking forward to seeing you there.
The project in the foyer of the museum invites the visitors to sit down in a discussion studio and get into a conversation with each other. Draw a moderation card and discuss historic as well as current questions on democracy, politics, media and culture.
“Welcome to the Club” is a project by Martin Krenn in cooperation with Büro trafo.K (Office for Art Education and Critical Knowledge Production) and Louise Beckershaus, Markus Fösl, Sarah von Holt, Dominik Ivancic, Anna Jungmayr, Nikolaus Kowarz, Katharina Kraus, Eva Meran, Antonia Plessing (mediation team hdgö)
House of Austrian History, location: Neue Burg, Heldenplatz, Vienna